By Jason Parent
Genre: Thriller, Mystery
Fate in plain sight.
Major Crimes Detective Samantha Reilly prefers to work alone—she’s seen as a maverick, and she still struggles privately with the death of her partner. The only person who ever sees her softer side is Michael Turcotte, a teenager she’s known since she rescued him eleven years ago from the aftermath of his parents’ murder-suicide.
In foster care since his parents’ death, Michael is a loner who tries to fly under the bullies’ radar, but a violent assault triggers a disturbing ability to view people’s dark futures. No one believes his first vision means anything, though—not even Sam Reilly. When reality mimics his prediction, however, Sam isn’t the only one to take notice. A strange girl named Tessa Masterson asks Michael about her future, and what he sees sends him back to Sam—is Tessa victim or perpetrator?
Tessa’s tangled secrets draw Michael and Sam inexorably into a deadly conflict. Sam relies on Michael, but his only advantage is the visions he never asked for. As they track a cold and calculating killer, one misstep could turn the hunters into prey.
In his head, Jason Parent lives in many places, but in the real world, he calls Southeastern Massachusetts his home. The region offers an abundance of settings for his writing and many wonderful places in which to write them. He currently resides with his cuddly corgi, Calypso.
In a prior life, Jason spent most of his time in front of a judge... as a civil litigator. When he tired of Latin phrases no one knew how to pronounce and explaining to people that real lawsuits are not started, tried, and finalized within the 60-minute time-frame they see on TV, he traded in his cheap suits for flip-flops and designer stubble. The flops got repossessed the next day, and he’s back in the legal field... sorta. But that’s another story.
When he’s not working, Jason likes to kayak, catch a movie, travel any place that will let him enter, and play just about any sport (except for the one with that ball tied to the pole thing where you basically just whack the ball until it twists in on knot or takes somebody’s head off). And read and write, of course. He does that too sometimes.
A lot of us wish to see the future, but this book makes us ask, "Do we really want to know what's going to happen?"
Reminiscent of The Dead Zone by Stephen King, we get to meet a precognitive teen, a troubled detective and a mysterious girl who might or might not be a victim. With a small cast of characters and a very good focus on plot, this was one of the best books I've read this year.
This reminds me of a book that could have been written forty years ago. No deep romance, needless sex, and the only monsters are human. This was a page-turning thriller whose supernatural elements did not in any way detract from its authenticity.
I liked Samantha more than Michael; I found her very believable, and very realistic. Michael had this ethereal vibe about him I can't quite describe, and I liked the character. He wasn't the typical foster kid, which was nice to see.
There are a few plot twists, none of them a deus ex machina, which is nice. The story gets brutal for the readers and characters at times, but never over the top. I have not read much of Mr. Parent's work, but I am now a fan!